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NFC Phone Docks

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by ttaylor0024, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    After finally receiving my NFC tags from tagstand, I installed Birdman's 4.0.3 ROM to enable NFC writing. I made my tag enable wifi, associate with my router, turn volumes off, and enable my clock to put it on my phone dock I made. The dock is 1/2" thick oak where the phone rests, and I have my diztronics case on it. I tested the tag at the back of the wood just to see how it would do. To my surprise it worked! It read my tag perfectly THROUGH 1/2" oak AND a case! This is going to make my docks so much easier to make!

    Here are the docks I made for my droid, I will have updated versions for the Gnex because of other locations for charging, etc. If you guys want to buy one, let me know, I would gladly make some more specifically designed for the GNex (with NFC tags too!) Just shoot me a PM :)

    Tape was temporary, will probably hide the tag in-between two pieces of wood in the finished GNex version :)

    Dock drafted for GNex. Cutouts for USB/Headphones on right, and volume on bottom. If you are interested in the dock with/without pre-programmed NFC tags, shoot me a PM. Different materials available, and will look much better in person :) Will be hand-crafted my me :)

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  2. clb2196

    clb2196 Android Enthusiast

    So cool :) My tags are waiting for me at home in the mailbox, can't wait to use em!
  3. alostpacket

    alostpacket Over Macho Grande?

    Very cool -- i love seeing stuff like this.

    Even just the homemade doc is awesome. The NFC is icing :)
  4. Romparoo

    Romparoo Android Enthusiast

    So, what is the advantage of having the NFC tag on your dock?

    I do not know much about NFC, nor a NFC tag, and what it would do when you have it docked.

    I am sure I will be very interseted after you explain it to me.

  5. Romparoo

    Romparoo Android Enthusiast

    PS, the dock looks great!
  6. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter


    The NFC tag can essentially be programmed to do whatever you want it to; from opening an app, to turning on wifi & connecting to a router of your choice. I ordered a few tags to play around with to get familiar with the system and currently am using three: One for my night dock, one by my PC, and one for my car. Here is what I have each programmed to do...

    Night Dock: Turn ringer to silent, turn on wifi, connect to home router, start clock app.
    PC Dock: Turn on wifi, connect to home router, enable ringer, start airdroid
    Car: Turn ringer on, enable Navigation App, turn off wifi

    They can literally be programmed to do just about anything you can think of. I am really excited to learn more about this new feature (and have some effective implementations!)
  7. syntrix

    syntrix Android Expert

    How do you program? Is there a specific app in that rom? Or does it just read the NFC ID and you create actions around the ID?

    I was looking at these and they try to sell a "programmer" with no drivers or programs, etc.

    Need more info on NFC tags and programming. IE, have a party and if people scan it, it links direct into a bookface post with no other software. Don't even know if that's possible, but would be cool!
  8. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    You can download an app in the android market called NFC Task Launcher. It allows you to read/write tags, but you must be on 4.0.3. Rooting/not rooting doesn't make a difference, although if you want to write tags right now, you must be rooted as 4.0.3 OTA hasn't come out yet :p
  9. Romparoo

    Romparoo Android Enthusiast

    This is way awesome! I was right, I am excited!

    I read a little from Google search and it sounds good.

    So all one(I) would need is the tags, the app from market, and 4.0.3? And then I could program it any way I desire? No need to get a software for my PC or connect USB cables to the PC and such?
  10. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    You got it :)
    Romparoo likes this.
  11. syntrix

    syntrix Android Expert

    Well that app from what I read, is reactive to the NFC ID. Basically it will receive ID 654654564644565465465465985 and you setup the tasks to be done. I like it, and it appears to work just fine for a single user.

    I'm looking for the other way around. Program the tag to product result X for many phones.
  12. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    What do you mean by this exactly?
  13. eyc

    eyc Well-Known Member

    Just out of curiosity, how do you program the chip? Do you put the chip up to your phone, turn on the app that you mentioned, and just assign the functions? Is it really that easy?
  14. syntrix

    syntrix Android Expert

    Programming the chip to give specific programmed data back, like a url or something else rather than the ID of the chip.

    Sure you can program your app to respond to the RFID tag, but can your RFID tag GIVE you data?

    Surely this is the expensive option on the RFID suppliers "programming setup".

    IE, put a programmed RFID in a public place... say a party. Anyone that hits that RFID should have to do nothing, it should check them in someplace automatically, or give a special url, or basically some data.

    Can this be done? I'll call the places after the holiday. I'm not interested in setting an alarm, but if I can put up an RFID tag that says :://foursquare:check-in:localcoffeehouse:url=http:///blah blah blah.... that would be epic RFID

    Maybe RFID TAGS are just dumb TAGS, I have no idea.
  15. Roroco

    Roroco Well-Known Member

    I am actually thinking about reducing my dependency on Setting Profile and getting a bunch of RFID Tags to help me automate settings changes when I get in my car, get to work, and get home... Settings Profiles and the such work well, but their dependency on GPS make them a no go for location based rules... mostly because of battery life.
  16. icedog

    icedog Newbie

    From what I've read it sounds like these tags have just a unique identifier. You don't program the tags; you program the phone to decide what happens when a particular identifier is read.

    For instance, you have a tag with the ID 12345. Then you can program your phone so that if tag 12345 is read, it'll do X functionality. However, another phone which reads 12345 could do something completely different, depending on what the user has set it to do. By default, the tag hasn't been seen by this new device, so it'll do nothing.

    What syntrix is asking, is can the tag tell any phone what functionality to perform, without having to program the phone before hand. According to others, you can store some data on them.

    Also, this can be mimicked by having a central database of tags and all NFC reader apps using that database. This would only be necessary if you want to avoid programming each phone that scans this particular tag. So for tags found in public...
    eyc likes this.
  17. syntrix

    syntrix Android Expert

    Yeah, one of the tag sellers offers that (online mgmt), but I'm not so sure it's app dependent.
  18. Roroco

    Roroco Well-Known Member

    Can anyone recommend tags? There seems to be a large variety, but I don't know what the differences are...
  19. mcso619

    mcso619 Newbie

    I have a question about the tags. Would there be any downsides to having the tag on the backside of a dock (like a car dock) where it will be constantly read? I'm hoping that I can solve the problem of not having a car mode when in the car dock with something like this. Will it run down the battery due to the constant reading? Do tags have a lifespan?
  20. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    From what I understand about these, it writes the data to the tags themselves. Each can only hold so much data, which I have run into issues trying to write too much to some of the tags. I believe they do exactly what you are talking about, as some are designed to be put in business cards and posters.
  21. trav473

    trav473 Android Enthusiast

  22. friguy3

    friguy3 Newbie

    Yes, each one has a VERY small memory so they can be placed on ads, business cards, locations/stores...
  23. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    If you guys are interested, I just finished a render of the dock I am going to make for the GNex. It will look much better when its actually completed, as my drafting skills arn't the best... haha I can also put pre-programmed NFC tags in them for you too. Many different woods also. PM me if you are interested :)

    alostpacket likes this.
  24. alostpacket

    alostpacket Over Macho Grande?

    What software do you use to do those renders?

    Also how does it help you? I mean, like, other than visualizing -- do you print out anything to help with measurements?
    Paul1201 likes this.
  25. ttaylor0024

    ttaylor0024 Android Enthusiast
    Thread Starter

    It's Google Sketchup. I have autocad too, but sketchup is faster for simple stuff like this without extreme detail. I mainly use it to visualize how I want it, and how everything will work together.

    CAD programs are almost essential to my bigger projects, like knives (yes, home-made knives), home entertainment centers, sub-boxes, etc. I get everything rendered, find sizes needed, measure twice, cut once.

    If anyone is interested, I could make one of these docks with NFC for $30 + S&H.
    alostpacket likes this.

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The Galaxy Nexus release date was November 2011. Features and Specs include a 4.65" inch screen, 5MP camera, 1GB RAM, TI OMAP 4460 processor, and 1750mAh battery.

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